The characteristics of the youthful population in America is steadily changing across the centuries. The late 1940s hosted the baby boom generations, then the 1960s ushered the hippies, and our current generation is the “Pepsi” generation. This article compares yesterday and today’s youths. It also examines the role of the youthful population in the socio-economic development of society. Additionally, it evaluates the relationship between parents and children. The youths are a fundamental human resource due to their potential in promoting change and innovation. The current group of youthful population is diverse. Unfortunately, the marginalized youths are growing in number compared to the rest of the young people. Apart from the declining quality of education, the current society has been put to test with the group of youths emerging previous conceived unorthodox family and social dynamics. Most of these youths have been brought up by single parents or hail from new ethnic groups.
The youth of today have a different attitude towards life. Although they have the traditional aspirations of family, marriage, wealth and work, the youthful population are forced to worry about civilization challenges such as nuclear war and crime that are steadily on the rise (Otto, 385). Today’s youths behave differently. The young generation are productive and working for a better future. However, in as much as drug abuse rate is declining, health issues are increasing, and mortality rates are rising from the increasing homicides, suicides, and accidents. Modern youth present a change to the young population and family service. Currently, social programs concentrate more on the elderly, little attention is paid to the increasing number of childless families among youths. There is also growing indifference between the youth and parents, as such, it is becoming more demanding to incorporate the parental influence on children of the coming generation. Apart from the young population, the social structure of society has realized a drastic change.
The modern world is highly civilized, with technology placed as the highlight of society. The current youth generation has a new culture and lives within a socio-economic environment that is entirely different from that of the youths of the past century. The young population of the modern era, are a sharp contrast to the groups of previous generations. The youthful population exist as smaller diverse groups that exhibit different behavior and attitudes on sociological ideologies. Unlike the past generation where the emphasis was on family and social values, there are a group of youths today who disregard the concept of the basic family unit, marriage and other aspects of morality. These group attribute to the increasing number of single parents, children born out wedlock, childless families, and LGBTQ families among others. Unlike their predecessors, the youths of today have a heavy responsibility of working hard to support the dependent generations comprising mostly of the elderly and the children.
On the hand, the youthful population is the most exposed to socio-economic challenges affecting the society such as unemployment and increased crime rates. There is growing indifference between youths and their parents. In the past, communities saw the elderly as a source of wisdom and knowledge however today the youth are more enlightened as a result of changes in the education sector and technological advancement. Therefore, the influence of the parents on the children is slowly diminishing as children are encouraged to take a different path from their parents. Modernization has not only altered the social organization of the society but has also created new challenges for society. Youths and the general population are concerned with, political conflicts, environmental degradation, natural calamities, and climatic condition.
Otto, Luther B. “America’s Youth: A Changing Profile.” Family Relations, vol. 37, no. 4, 1988, p. 385.
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